More than thirty local residents braved the torrential rain over the bank holiday weekend to toast the success of a new garden in Blackfriars Road
Helen Gladstone House Garden is a new green space on the corner of Surrey Road and Blackfriars Road
. It is the result of the determination of local residents and the Nelson Square
Gardens Community Association to see that the empty corner didn't just become a litter-strewn dog toilet.
Careful work with the deputy housing manager Ghazala Faiza at Library Street
led to a grant application to the council's Joint Security initiative and that brought in £32,000 The Community Association then worked with Peter Graal at Bankside Open Spaces Trust
to work up some ideas which were presented to the residents in an open forum to pick out a winning design.
Groundwork Southwark had submitted the winning bid but the plans were more extensive than the funds and so Library Street
managed to add £10,000 to complete the main works.
And the final funds came through on the morning of the opening, with a grant of almost £5,000 from Awards for All which will pay for benches and more plants.
The opening event provided an opportunity to bring together different parts of the community. Residents were able to chat with local police, voluntary workers and council officers whilst sipping champagne and listening as 18 year old resident Kira Hartup played classical and modern pieces on her flute.